Vegetarian Country-Style Pate

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

I like the hearty flavor of this country-style pâté made with eggplant, lentils, walnuts, and tofu. The flavor improves if you make it ahead and refrigerate it overnight.

Serves6 to 8

Cooking MethodSauteeing, Slow Cooking



Total Timea day or more

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionBuffet, Casual Dinner Party, Cocktail Party, Family Get-together, Formal Dinner Party

Recipe CourseHors D'oeuvre, Snack

Dietary ConsiderationEgg-free, Halal, Kosher, Lactose-free, Peanut Free, Vegan, Vegetarian

EquipmentCrock Pot, Food Processor

MealDinner, Lunch, Snack

Taste and TextureNutty, Savory, Spiced, Umami

Type of DishDip/spread, Vegetable


  • 1 medium-size eggplant, peeled and sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups cooked brown lentils, well drained
  • 1 cup finely ground walnuts
  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 1 cup drained firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons tamari or other soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour


  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Place the eggplant on a lightly oiled baking pan and bake until soft, turning once, about 20 minutes. Set aside to cool.

  2. Heat the oil in a small skillet over medium heat, add the onion and garlic, cover, and cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.

  3. Place the onion mixture in a food processor along with the eggplant. Add the remaining ingredients, except the flour, and process until just combined. Do not overprocess. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Stir in the flour.

  4. Lightly oil a small loaf pan or 7-inch springform pan, depending on the shape of your slow cooker. Fill with the pâté mixture, packing it in and smoothing the top. Cover with aluminum foil, making several holes in the foil for steam to escape and place the pan on a trivet or rack that has been set inside a 6-quart slow cooker. Pour an inch of water into the bottom of the cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 4 hours.

  5. Remove from the slow cooker and let cool completely before removing from the pan. Refrigerate for at least several hours or overnight before serving.


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I think this recipe would work without a slow cooker if you used a dutch oven instead of a slow cooker and made sure to replace the water every so often so that it doesn't evaporate. The Fahrenheit equivalent of the Low setting on a slow cooker is about 200°F. Let me know if that works!

This sounds delicious. How would you suggest cooking it without the slow cooker?


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